The Massage Therapist & Self-Employment

by Shaunna Leclair | Mar 10, 2019 | Massage EducationMassage Income | 0 comments


Most Therapists, today are self-employed. Whether you’re on commission, rent a room, or own the clinic/spa, very few of us are ‘employees.’

What are your goals of being a Massage Therapist? Short Term, and Long Term?

Many of us Graduate a Program, and dream of owning a Clinic, Health Spa, or Co-Op.

In Evolution of Your Practice, we are going to look at the things you need to know about self-employment, Clinic Ownership, Partnerships, Group Practice, Finances… everything that we weren’t taught in most programs.

Let’s get started!!


The first steps to being self-employed, and the questions you need to ask yourself, are relatively basic.

  1. Are you willing to take the risks involved with being self-employed? (Do you know what those risks are)?
  2. How much credit can you get from your suppliers?
  3. Where is your start-up funding coming from?
  4. Have you talked to your bank? Do you have a Business Plan?
  5. Do you want, or need, a business partner? What are their qualifications? What is their credit history? Financially, will they qualify for credit as well?
  6. Have you talked to a lawyer? Leases, contracts, partner agreements, commission staff, and paid employees… what are your obligations?
  7. Do you have emotional/ mental support? Are people telling you to ‘Go for It,’ or wait?
  8. Could you make more money working for someone else?

Personal Assessment

This is a reasonably straightforward exercise. It’s an intimate look at yourself, where you’ve been, where you are now, and where you want to be in the future.

  1. List your accomplishments to date. Education, previous work history, volunteer work, anything you can put down that you feel is an achievement.
  2. What are your strengths? Where do you excel? (Ex: Techniques, communication, charting).
  3. What are some of your weaknesses? Where do you feel you could improve? Professionally, and personally.
  4. How would you describe yourself?
  5. How would others describe you?
  6. Who has influenced you the most? How?
  7. Describe your dream practice. The room, location, employment standard. Who owns the place? Do you rent? Are you the Clinic owner? Are you commission? How many Massages a day are you doing? A week? A Month? How far in advance do you want to be booked?


Self-Employment Assessment

          The Best way to describe yourself:

  • a) Get going on your own?
  • b) Someone tells you what to do, and you do it?
  • c) I don’t get out of my zone unless I have to?


  • How I feel about other people:
  • a) I love meeting new people! I can get along with everyone.
  • b) I have my circle, and I’m happy. New friends are unnecessary.
  • c) I am an Island. I’m good on my own thanks!


  • Are You A Leader?
  • a) You Bet! Most people love my plan!
  • b) If someone tells me to, I can make others do things.
  • c) I prefer to only help out when others need it or ask.


  • Are you responsible?
  • a) I take charge and follow through until the project is done.
  • b) Others know more than I, so it’s ok if they just let me help.
  • c) Let someone else do it. I’m busy.


  • Organization:
  • a) I prefer to have a plan, line everything up, and get others involved.
  • b) If it’s confusing, I’m out. The easier, the better.
  • c) Things will happen in their own time.


  • What type of worker are you?
  • a) I keep going until the job is done.
  • b) I go hard, and when I’ve had enough, I’m done.
  • c) I prefer to coast. Live and let live; it will get done… eventually.


  • How are you with decisions?
  • a) I can think on the fly, and everything works out.
  • b) With time to think, I’m good. If I have to think fast, I question every choice I make.
  • c) Let others make the decisions. I’m good either way.


  • Do People trust you?
  • a) I say what I mean, and I mean what I say. If I don’t know the answer, I do my best to find it, or someone who can.
  • b) Most of the time, yes, but sometimes I say things to sound good.
  • c) If they don’t know, why bother?


  • Do you have a ‘Stick to it’ attitude?
  • a) Nothing can stop me once I know what I want.
  • b) I finish what I start, but only if it goes smoothly all the way.
  • c) If it goes sideways at any point, I’m out!


  • HealthWise, I am:
  • a) Fantastic! I never get run down.
  • b) Good. I have some rough days, but all in all well.
  • c) I like my naps often, and regularly.

There are no right or wrong answers to these questions. This is just a starting point — a picture of today.

Self-Employment Score Key

If your answers are mostly:

A’s – You have what it takes to run a Business

B’s- A good Partner would be beneficial

C’s- You’re best off being a sole entity. Renting a room, or on commission.

Have an Awesome Day!!



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